Although the prospects for major legislation legalizing recreational cannabis in the state of Maryland may be fleeting in the current General Assembly session, support for the idea continues to grow among state voters.
According to a poll released Tuesday morning by Goucher College, fully two-thirds of Maryland adults now favor legalization of recreational marijuana ― including, for the first time, about half of Republicans. That’s the highest percentage of support for legalization since Goucher pollsters started asking the question in October 2013.
“This most recent [legislative] effort comes on the heels of four states voting to legalize recreational cannabis by ballot measure this past November and, most recently, New Jersey and Virginia passing adult-use marijuana legalization laws,” said Mileah Kromer, director of the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher College. “We’ve consistently found that a majority of Marylanders support the legalization of recreational cannabis, but this is the first time Republican support has reached 50 percent.”
There is still a wide partisan gap on the question of legalizing marijuana in the state, the poll found:
• Among Democrats, 77% support, while 18% oppose
• Among Republicans, 50% support, while 47% oppose
• Among independents, 60% support and 34% oppose
Two years ago, 57% of residents supported legalizing the recreational use of marijuana, while 37% said they were opposed. [Read more at WTOP]